She's ready for her Broadway close-up. The Jamie Lloyd-directed London revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard is heading to Broadway this year. Nicole Scherzinger, who currently stars in the West End production at the Savoy, will reprise her role as faded silent-screen star Norma Desmond for New York audiences, marking her Broadway debut. Watch a teaser video for the forthcoming Broadway production above.
Scherzinger will be joined by three of her London co-stars: Tom Francis as Joe Gillis, Grace Hodgett-Young as Betty Schaefer, and Olivier winner David Thaxton as Max Von Mayerling.
In London, Scherzinger plays seven performances a week, with Rachel Tucker as the Monday night Norma. No word yet on an alternate Norma for Broadway. Production dates, theatre, and additional casting will be announced at a later date (though rumors are the production will play in the fall, and Scherzinger's contract will last six months).
The Sunset Boulevard revival has been a startling departure for the traditionally opulently designed musical, it features a minimalist set and ample use of live video. Images of the curtain call, featuring Scherzinger covered in blood, went viral on social media. The show opened in London's West End at the Savoy Theatre October 12. Read the reviews here.
The production also has set and costume design by Soutra Gilmour, choreography by Fabian Aloise, music supervision and musical direction by Alan Williams, lighting design by Jack Knowles, sound design by Adam Fisher, video design and cinematography by Nathan Amzi and Joe Ransom, U.S. casting by Jim Carnahan and Jason Thinger and U.K. casting by Stuart Burt. 101 Productions, Ltd. serves as the General Manager for Sunset Boulevard.
Lloyd Webber's Sunset Boulevard (with a book and lyrics by Don Black and Christopher Hampton) is based on the 1950 Billy Wilder movie of the same name, which featured Gloria Swanson as the reclusive Norma Desmond who falls in love with an unlucky writer—Joe Gillis—who happens upon her home by accident. William Holden played Gillis in the film, which was directed by the late Billy Wilder. Swanson, Holden, and Wilder all received Academy Award nominations for their work.
Tony and Olivier Award winner Patti LuPone created the role of Norma Desmond for the musical's world-premiere production in London, earning an Olivier nomination for her performance. Glenn Close played the role in Los Angeles and later in New York, where she won a Tony Award for her work as the aging actor. Other musical Normas include Tony winner Betty Buckley (London and New York), Olivier winner Elaine Paige (London and New York), Tony winner Diahann Carroll (Canada), Petula Clark (London and U.S. tour), Debra Byrne (Australia), Helen Schneider (Germany), and Linda Balgord (U.S. tour). After bringing her Norma to London, Close starred in the 2017 Broadway revival of Sunset, while Tony winner Stephanie J. Block played Norma in a recent production at the Kennedy Center. It was also recently announced that Sarah Brightman will star in a new production of the musical in Australia later this year.
Scherzinger, who played Grace in Annie Live!, also voiced the character Sina in Disney’s Moana and starred in ABC's remake of Dirty Dancing. She was seen as Grizabella in the London revival of Cats.
Sunset Boulevard is produced by The Jamie Lloyd Company, Ambassador Theatre Group Productions, Michael Harrison for Lloyd Webber Harrison Musicals, and Gavin Kalin Productions by arrangement with The Really Useful Group Ltd and based on the original Paramount film by Billy Wilder.